For America’s Sake

 

For America’s Sake
By Mike Weston

 

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High everyone! I hope everyone is doing well. Today I would like to talk about a few things on my mind that is very important to the cannabis and hemp movement worldwide, not just for America. Everything I talk about today can be found online if you look hard enough, I won’t have room to list references or links but trust me everything IS online, that’s where I personally found the info. I would like to start off by saying, I know the CBD world movement and many other events and research have brought us to this point as well as countless die-hard activists and support groups and lobbyists. However, due to some upcoming law changes from our neighbors to the north and an imperative election approaching November 6th, one of the most important elections for cannabis and hemp for the world is the November elections in America.

As you may have guessed this article will be mainly on politics and less on the health side of cannabis, but I’ll put something for that in as well. So let’s go ahead and get started with the nitty-gritty good stuff. Being from Fayetteville, North Carolina, I am around nothing but active and retired military all day every day. Although I’m not medically able to join I DO FULLY support the service men and women of our country. With that said, there are others that may not feel the same way. I’m talking about PETE SESSIONS mainly, along with a few others. He is a Republican House of Rep congressman in Texas 32 district, he is also the chairman of the powerful… US House Rules Committee that decides whether any and all medical cannabis bills for the military reach the house and senate floor for a federal vote. He was elected to office in 1996…ironically the same year medical cannabis was legalized in California for medical use. I have to be honest that I don’t know much about Pete Sessions other than what I just wrote, but politically speaking, I think nobody should be able to be in any politically furnished office more than the president himself….NO CAREER politicians, cannabis-friendly or not. This coming election is the first time in years that Pete has had a challenger for his seat. Much less an already known former NFL player..turned civil right lawyer Colin Allred. Colin Allred is the democratic nominee for Pete sessions seat in the house of reps, Allred was a linebacker for the Tennessee Titans in the NFL. Not saying that if Colin wins, he will be the new House Rules Committee chairman, but at least Pete might not be. Whether or not the entire Rules Committee votes yes on a federal medical bill for the military Pete says no and it never reaches a vote. Since Pete has been in office he has turned down more than 3 dozens medical cannabis bills.. mostly for our retired brothers in arms. I’m not just bagging on Pete sessions, there are many more anti-cannabis candidates running and currently in offices like Joe Kennedy and Jeff Sessions. (For the record Jeff Sessions and Pete Sessions are NOT related) In this upcoming election, there are countless seats up for grabs for House of Representatives, Senate, governorships, as well as lower level government positions.

The main reason why I’m writing this today is that whoever wins the seats will have the voting power for federal medical or full recreational next year when federal committees vote. It was just recently announced by California Rep. Dana Rohrabacher that he has talked with the inner circle of the Trump administration and expects to have federal legislation shortly after the upcoming elections, but one can only wait and see. It’s vital to keep in mind that Canada goes fully legal with recreational cannabis tomorrow Wednesday, October 17, 2018. So in addition to patrolling and filtering the Mexican border, now the federal government has to spend even more money to battle an unwinnable war, only from both sides of the border instead of just one. From what I have read and understood the international laws between the US and Canada are being greatly affected, and pretty sure they will change again and again ‘in the near future. If you want to look them up for yourself I highly encourage that, especially if you like to travel. Also, keep in mind that the Mexican Supreme Court has already given 3 of the 5 approvals needed for nationwide Mexican recreational legalization. They vote again next year….to help end the violence and drug cartels its only a matter of time and money before the other 2 approvals are given. Now that the world health organization has given cannabis their approval, other countries, cities, and towns across the world are going medical and fully legal because of the massive amounts of cash being made. Uruguay set the trend back in 2013, and it’s only taken 5 more years for another wealthy country to fully legalize. Not to mention Guam and the United Kingdom going fully medical countrywide next month.

With a brand new world economic commodity, at everyone’s fingertips and billions if not trillions able to be made, and currently being made I’m personally wondering how long the United States can continuously lose money by enforcing a law that is not controlling anything except federal money loss. Also having the biggest companies in the world investing big money into not only CBD but all things cannabis and hemp, puts even more pressure on US laws to change. Some of the recently interested companies include…Walmart, Constellation Alcohol brands..( makers of Corona beer), Pepsi-Cola, Coca-Cola, not to mention other fortunes 500 company just waiting for the pen stroke of the law change to invest billions that don’t want to be identified yet. Don’t forget about Scotts Miracle Grow that just invested more than half their stock into a hydroponics company.

With hemp biofuel and electric cars on the uprising and becoming more popular, the need for industrial hemp grown NOT FOR CBD is getting bigger by the day, if only we had major processing facilities throughout the US to process industrial hemp into ANYTHING that can be made from hemp, we would have another multi-trillion-dollar commodity the United States could rely on. Although with the 2014 federal farm act came legalization of industrial hemp, there are still some states that have it banned. The people who are voted into office on November 6th will have the power to vote on that as well.

In my humble and honest opinion, the United States federal government will probably legalize medical cannabis on a federal level… with several catches, more than likely the corporations will figure out a way to try to take over the cannabis movement they have been fighting for years. I know that might tick a lot of people off but IF its gonna be legalized at all, they will need to feel in control of it no matter what. However, if they try to control cannabis the way they do and have their own opiate pharma drugs, they will very quickly have another crisis to deal with.

I am beyond thrilled that we are having so much legalization going on around the world at the same time. That means that just about everyone around the world is agreeing on at least one thing in general that the United States federal government does not…Cannabis legislation.

Now for the health section…recently I have been thinking about kids with cancer and cannabis. Not particular kids with epilepsy that need CBD oil, but kids with cancer that need real cannabis oil WITH THC. I keep seeing the ads on tv for Shriners Hosptial for Children, St. Jude Children’s Hospital for Children asking for donation money to support their cause. I fully support children in every way and hate to see them have to battle any type of illness or disease. However, knowing that cannabis is one of the only ways to kill and beat cancer, I’m interested in finding out about a foundation called the cashyhyde foundation.. or any other foundation or organization that is doing research with cannabis for kids with cancer. Me, personally, I’m willing to donate to a smart and great cause if I know the kids are truly getting help with cannabis, not just for a good feeling monthly donation. If there are any new groups or foundations for cannabis for children’s cancer please contact CVRN and let me know. I will gladly and happily put them in my next article.

So please everyone, if you are legally able to vote in the United States, does so…For America’s Sake! Voice your opinion one way or another. Hopefully, you will be a vote to forward cannabis legislation!

Til next time….stay cool, calm, and collected.

Mike Weston

Rite Aid poised to sell Epidiolex-Cannabis Derived Drug for Epilepsy

Rite Aid and other US pharmacies could soon sell a drug derived from cannabis.

The Food and Drug Administration on June 25 approved Epidiolex, a treatment for epilepsy created by British drugmaker GW Pharmaceuticals (GWPH).

The Drug Enforcement Administration has 90 days to schedule the medication, and it is widely expected to allow doctors to prescribe it. That will open the cannabis industry to mainstream pharmacies and medical practitioners.

Rite Aid (RAD) told CNNMoney it would sell Epidiolex once the DEA schedules it. “Rite Aid pharmacists fill prescriptions in accordance with all state regulations and laws as well as those set forth by the DEA and FDA,” said Rite Aid spokeswoman Ashley Flower. “Given that Epidiolex has received approval from the FDA, upon being rescheduled, Rite Aid expects to fill prescriptions for Epidiolex later this year based on availability.”

To read more visit CNN Money

New York Finally Finishes The Report That’s Been Holding Up Legalization

ROB HOFFMAN

Lawmakers have been delaying legalization in anticipation of a study from the state’s health department.

A long-awaited study on legal cannabis’ potential impacts on New York state has finally been completed. This week, an anonymous source reportedly told Spectrum News that the study, yet to be released to the public, suggests that New York’s criminal justice reform efforts and tax revenues would benefit from cannabis legalization. However, the study reportedly does not include any outright endorsements of legalization.

To read the rest of this story visit Herb

 

San Francisco To Adopt App To Help Clear Old Marijuana Convictions

May 16,2018 | By Matt Ferner for HuffPost

San Francisco’s top prosecutor is working with a tech nonprofit to develop an app that would automate the process for individuals with past marijuana convictions to get those offenses cleared from their record, the San Francisco district attorney’s office announced Tuesday.

District Attorney George Gascón said his office would be teaming up with Code For America, a nonprofit group that develops technology with the government to help solve community problems. The group will provide the office with an online app called Clear My Record, which will allow prosecutors to automatically fill out the required forms and generate a digital file that they can then submit to the court to clear a person’s past pot convictions. Reformers view it as a meaningful step toward further reducing the harms from the failed war on drugs. Criminal convictions can have devastating consequences long after an offense was committed, making it difficult to obtain employment, bank loans and housing.

“When the government uses 20th-century tools to tackle 21st-century problems, it’s the public that pays the price,” Gascón said.

When California enacted Proposition 64, it didn’t just legalize marijuana for recreational purposes but also instituted one of the most progressive criminal justice reforms in the country. The law authorized a new process for individuals in the state to get their previous marijuana-related convictions retroactively reduced, reclassified as lesser offenses or cleared altogether.

And while the relief for past convictions is a component built into California’s new marijuana laws, the process is not automatic. Individuals with past marijuana convictions must know the relief exists, petition the courts themselves to file the appropriate paperwork and may need to retain an attorney to do so. The process can be time-consuming and costly.

When the government uses 20th-century tools to tackle 21st-century problems, it’s the public that pays the price.

In January, Gascón announced that his office would automatically be applying the law to all misdemeanor and felony cases in San Francisco dating back to 1975. In total, his office will be reviewing, recalling and re-sentencing up to around 8,000 cases that were sentenced prior to the ballot measure’s passage. The approach is novel because no action is required from eligible individuals with past marijuana convictions to take advantage of the law. The DA’s office is applying the relief process on its own.

Since Gascón’s announcement, prosecutors from around the state and nation have pledged to reduce or dismiss old marijuana convictions.

On Tuesday the DA said that the felony convictions his office was working on take much more time to process due to an analysis of rap sheets in order to make the proper eligibility determinations for an individual. But with the app from Code For America, Gascón expects the process to become automated for his office and speed up the pathway to relief for individuals with these marks on their records.

The new process will be applied to 4,940 felony marijuana convictions that the office identified dating back to 1975, Gascón said, and will still not require any action from those with the past weed convictions on their records.

San Francisco city and county officials have found that the black community has been over-represented in marijuana-related arrests in the region, even though multiple studies have found that rates of marijuana use and sale are similar across racial lines. In a study from the city’s Human Rights Commission on the effects of marijuana policy in the region, between 1999 and 2000, arrests of African-Americans for marijuana-related offenses jumped from 34 to 41 percent, despite black San Franciscans making up less than 8 percent of the population in 2000. In 2011, after the penalty for marijuana possession was downgraded from a misdemeanor in San Francisco, 50 percent of marijuana-related arrests were of African-Americans, while they represented just 6 percent of the region’s population in 2010.

California has produced vast amounts of marijuana for years. In 1996, it became the first state to legalize medical marijuana. And despite the passage of more permissive laws, there were still thousands of marijuana-related arrests annually. From 2006 to 2015, there were nearly 500,000 people arrested for marijuana offenses, a recent Drug Policy Alliance report found, but the group estimates there may be closer to 1 million people in the state with convictions that could now be eligible for relief. However, across the state, only about 5,000 people have so far applied in the first several months of the year to have their marijuana sentences reviewed for possible relief, according to data compiled by the Judicial Council of California.

Prosecutors in pot-friendly jurisdictions have enormous power to offer relief for people previously convicted of marijuana offenses in their jurisdiction, but many aren’t using it ― either because they don’t want to, they don’t have the resources for the process or because state legislatures haven’t passed laws that allow relief for now-legal acts.

But for those that can and want to provide relief, Code for America said that it plans to expand the pilot app to a handful of other California counties with the goal of clearing 250,000 marijuana convictions by next year.

“I’m hopeful that this partnership will inspire many prosecutors who have cited resource constraints to join this common-sense effort and provide this relief,” said Gascón.

Source: https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/san-francisco-to-adopt-software-app-to-help-automatically-clear-old-marijuana-convictions/ar-AAxnrkp

New York’s mayor to overhaul NYPD policing on marijuana to end discrimination

By Dina Ibrahim – May 15, 2018

New York’s Mayor Bill de Blasio on Tuesday vowed to “overhaul” NYPD’s marijuana enforcement policies in the next 30 days in an apparent response to a New York Times finding published Sunday.

The daily’s finding showed the glaring disparity between blacks and whites in terms of incarceration rates over low-level marijuana charges in the Big Apple. In its report, black people were arrested on low-level marijuana charges at eight times the rate of white.

In Manhattan, where the gap is the worst, black people were arrested at 15 times the rate of white people.

In his tweet, de Blasio said: “We must end unnecessary arrests and end disparity in enforcement.”

To read the rest of this article visit The Puff Puff Post